A trade license has to be processed and given by authorities prior to conducting any economic activity in the UAE. In Dubai, the free zone authorities and the Dept. of Economic Development issue licenses.
Take note: procedures pertaining to the processing of trade licenses vary from one jurisdiction in UAE to another. There are a number of licenses that can be applied for in the UAE including professional, industrial, and commercial. The government can also issue other types of licenses that are specific to certain economic activities.
6 Types of Trade Licenses in Dubai
1. The commercial license in Dubai
A commercial license is given to a business that is involved in any kind of commercial or trading activities that are in relation to services, commodities, and goods. An applicant for the license in Dubai will have to decide first on the activities that are planned to be conducted prior to submitting an application for a Dubai commercial license.
Some activities which fall under the category of commercial include car rentals, real estate brokerage, and logistics. Tertiary economic activities that come together with the business’s main activity/activities are to be limited to ten per trade license.
2. Industrial license
An industrial license is required when establishing manufacturing or industrial business activities in the UAE. For an industrial license, a business may assemble and/or process goods with the use of raw materials that are locally sourced or imported. A business has to obtain this kind of license if it is manufacturing food, textile, engines, equipment, metals, paper products, and petroleum products.
3. Professional license
A professional license provides permission to businesses and professionals in engaging in professions that they’re skilled in based on the educational qualifications that they possess. Activities that fall under the professional license include publishing, printing, beauty parlors, repair services, document cleaning, security services, computer graphic design, clinics or medical services, consultancy, and carpentry among others. With this kind of trade license in Dubai, a foreign investor may be able to get full ownership of the business.
4. Tourism license
A business that provides any tourism-related service such as tourist camps, rental of cruise boats, hotel and motel rental, guest houses, restaurants, and travel agencies is to acquire this trade license.
5. Agriculture license
This applies to other emirates in the UAE. Those that are involved with activities such as harvesting and cultivation of crops, installation of commercial greenhouses, trading of pesticides, growing of crops, and other botanical-related activities are to process an agricultural license. the application has to be approved by the government authorities prior to performing any related activity including the provision of agricultural consultancy.
6. Craftsmanship license
The license is needed by individuals that are providing carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work among others. If a business employs craftsmen in working for them, they are to check the service providers of a valid trade license.
It’s illegal for businesses in the UAE to perform any economic activity without possessing the correct license first. A ban on certain activities or hefty fines will be imposed on violators. A license also has to be renewed in order to prevent getting administrative penalties.
How to Change Activity to Your Trade License in Dubai
A business entity in the UAE is allowed in submitting an application for adding, changing, or removing an activity that is on the license it has been issued with. The process of changing the activities to a trade license of business in Dubai involves the following:
Process of Changing Activity to Trade License in Dubai
Step 1: Submit the application to the relevant government authority in which the business is under its jurisdiction.
Step 2: Attach the required documentation.
Step 3: Settle the payment for changing trade license activities.
Step 4: Get an updated license.
There are conditions for a business entity to be allowed to change its trade name. It has to make an announcement and have it published in any of the local newspapers for a day, the business premises of the entity has to be in line to activities that are requested to be added (subject to the approval of UAE authorities, and the trade name has to be amended if applicable.
The Requirements for Changing Activity to Trade License in Dubai
- The decision of the board of directors in changing the activity (for companies)
- The original license that was issued by the local authorities
- Approval from governmental bodies with regards to requested activities
- The company’s Memorandum and Articles of Association indicating the changing of activities (this applies to all types of companies that plan on changing, removing, and/or adding businesses activities)
- Certification of the UAE Ministry of Economy on the Memorandum of Association of a company following the amendment of business’ economic activities
Call us here in FAR Consulting Middle East today! Our team can help you have the license you need for your business.